If there is a single bit of advice I could pass along to my fellow survivalists and preppers, it is this — be realistic. Understand that while working hard to increase your abilities is important, it is just as critical to know your limitations. If you plan to bug out on foot, for example, and you get winded walking to the mailbox, odds are a journey of 250 miles isn’t going to end well for you. Sure, once upon a time you could manage 20+ miles a day while humping a ruck. That was 30 years and 95 pounds ago.
I’ve lost count of the number of preppers I’ve met who have a good supply of heirloom seeds and plan to feed their family with what they grow but have never gardened before in their lives. They figure they’ll just dig up a garden patch in the backyard, drop the seeds in the ground, and a few weeks later reap the bounty. It really, REALLY doesn’t work like that!
Or the ones who have stockpiled a ton of gold and silver rounds, booze, and candy, figuring they will just barter for whatever they need after a collapse. While planning for trade isn’t a bad idea, sort of like hedging your bet, the whole point of prepping is to have what you need ahead of time rather than relying upon anyone else to have enough extra to share.
Or those who have invested in enough armaments to equip a small nation and plan to just…liberate…supplies as necessary from neighbors and such. This isn’t Hollywood and you aren’t Jason Statham or Dwayne Johnson.
Survival skills, like any other skill set, are perishable. They require regular practice to remain in good working order. Learn from your mistakes while you have the luxury of making them with little to no risk. Know your limitations while working to overcome them. Adjust your plans as you go along, taking into account your slowly increasing abilities. Think about it like this – a year from now, you’ll wish you’d started today.
Above all else, though, examine your plans with an objective eye and give some thought as to how realistic they are. Adjust and adapt as necessary.